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Preview: Nikolai Duffy & Nick Norwood: What We Talk About When We Talk About Writing

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Featured image: Alan Cabello/Pexels


In her lectures on the writing process, Mary Reufle recalls how poet Paul Valery once strikingly depicted the beginning of a poem’s creation: ‘the opening of a poem’, he said, ‘is like finding a fruit on the ground, a piece of fallen fruit you have never seen before, and the poet’s task is to create the tree from which such a fruit would fall.’

The metaphors of the tree and fruit are apt, suggesting both the miracle of production as well as the exacting weight of a material artefact plucked seemingly from nothing. Yet, what if there are days when it feels as if the landscape of creativity will forever be desolate? Some days it would appear that the basket must go empty, necessarily. 

The sudden gifts and agonising suspensions of creativity encountered within the writing process, as well as the intricacies of the creative process itself, will be explored by Nikolai Duffy and Nick Hornwood in collaboration with Manchester Poetry Library.

Taking place as an online event, the audience is invited to witness a conversation with Duffy and Hornwood regarding their writing style and the lifestyle of a writer. Both awarded poets will share their knowledge for free, all curated through the Manchester Writing School. There will even be a chance for a Q+A session at the end of the talk, so have questions at the ready.

Duffy is the Assistant Head of the Postgraduate Arts and Humanities Centre and a Senior Lecturer in the Department of English at Manchester Metropolitan University. Hornwood is a professor of creative writing at Columbus State University and directs the Carson McCullers Center for Writers and Musicians in Columbus, Georgia, and Nyack, New York. Both Duffy and Hornwood have published volumes of their own poetry, in addition to having their poetry published widely in online journals. 


Nikolai Duffy & Nick Norwood: What We Talk About When We Talk About Writing will be held on the 22nd March 2022, 6-7 pm GMT.

Register to this free online event to receive further information and instructions.

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Samuel Rye

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